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Lecture ( 10,11,12). Energy Applications and Cleantech. We have…. An increasing number of environmental concerns at the global level and A decreasing amount of depletable resources like coal, petroleum and natural gas,.

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Lecture (10,11,12)

Energy Applications and Cleantech

we have
We have…
  • An increasing number of environmental concerns at the global level


  • A decreasing amount of depletable resources like coal, petroleum and natural gas,
Wind, solar and hybrid power are viable alternatives to fossil fuels.
  • Not only are they readily available, but they are renewable as well.
  • If we can create the technology to make them cost efficient and sufficient to meet our needs we can become independent of foreign oil.
Following is a graph that shows the % of our total energy provided by renewable energy.

sustainable versus renewable
Sustainable versus Renewable
  • Sustainable refers to a system that replenishes itself so that it can be used by future generations.
sustainable versus renewable1
Sustainable versus Renewable
  • Renewable implies something can be done more than once, or a resource that can be used repeatedly. For instance, crop-derived fuels (bio diesel) are renewable.

Something that is renewable is not necessarily sustainable.

Not all crops can be grown sustainably, yet they can be renewable.

Solar cells

A photovoltaic cell converts solar energy into electricity.

Silicon Solar Cells:



15-25% efficiency

(10% efficiency = 100 W/m2)


Popular Science innovation of the year 2007!

CIGS (Copper Indium Gallium Selenide) nanoparticle ink coated onto aluminum alloy foil


Panels can be made for about a tenth of what current panels cost and at a rate of several hundred feet per minute (16.4% efficiency )

quantum dots boost efficiency
Quantum Dots Boost Efficiency

Utilizes semiconductor quantum dots to modify the internal structure of the semiconductor material

Improved efficiencies

Reported cell efficiency 40-42%

multi junction photovoltaics with quantom dots
Multi-Junction Photovoltaics with Quantom Dots

Reported cell efficiency 40-42%

Basic Research Challenges for Solar Electricity

Generation I – bulk Si solar cells

  • single
  • polycrystalline

Generation II – thin films

  • Amorphous Si
  • Polycrystalline CdTe and CuInSe2
  • Dye Cells
  • Organic PV cells


Generation III – emerging technologies

  • Triple junction cells for CPV
  • Other novel concepts for high efficiency solar cells
    • Nanomaterials ?

High Efficiency + Low Cost / Watt

Fuel Cells

Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines

fuel cells
Their maximum output is 86 kilowatts, or about 107 HP. Because hydrogen fuel cell stacks produce power without combustion, they can be up to twice as efficient as internal combustion engines. They also produce zero carbon dioxide and other pollutants. Fuel Cells
fuel cell efficiencies are not limited by thermodynamics
Fuel Cell Efficiencies are not limited by thermodynamics

Polymer Membrane:

Cell: 50–70%System: 30–50%

Solid Oxide:

Cell: 60–65%System: 55–60%

DFC300: Large scale fuel cells suitable for medium-sized hotels, grocery stores, and similar commercial operations.

300 kW

47% electrical efficiency

24 hours a day, 7 days a week

FuelCell Energy, Inc.

Fuel Cells

Efficient: generates more electricity using less fuel with unparalleled electrical power generation efficiency of 47%

Ultra-clean: emits low CO2 and virtually zero pollutants into the atmosphere

Quiet: operates virtually unnoticed, making them suitable for almost any location

Reliable: achieves availability rating exceeding 96%, significantly higher than other alternative energy technologies

Economical: produces up to six times more electrical power than other forms of distributed generation with the same fuel input and can operate at up to 80% efficiency when used in Combined Heat and Power (CHP) applications

Simple: real-time monitoring of fuel cell system from FuelCell Energy's state-of-the-art Global Technical Assistance Center (GTAC)

Versatile: operates on a variety of fuels for use in a wide range of applications

DF3000: suitable for hospitals, universities, large commercial complexes, and utility grid support applications

2.8 MW

47% electrical efficiencyCombined Heat and Power

FuelCell Energy, Inc.

definitions of cleantech
Definitions of Cleantech
  • What is "cleantech"?
  • The term "cleantech" refers to technologies that:
    • - Use energy, water and other raw materials more efficiently and productively,
    • - Deliver equal or superior performance,
    • - Improve customer profitability, through cost reduction and / or increased revenues, and
    • - Create less waste or toxicity
  • ... as compared to incumbent technologies
companies in cleantech
Companies in Cleantech
  • Energy
    • Solar, fuel cell, batteries
  • Environmental Remediation
    • Air, water, soil
  • Water purification
  • Sensor technology
clean energy1
Clean Energy
  • Solar energy
  • Fuel cells
  • Batteries
  • Motors
  • Wind production
  • Hydrogen production
  • LED and CNT lighting
Solar cells

It is a photovoltaic cell that converts solar energy into electricity. A photovoltaic cell consists of semiconductor layers.


Popular Science innovation of the year 2007!

The company produces its PowerSheet solar cells with printing-press-style machines that set down a layer of solar-absorbing nano-ink onto metal sheets as thin as aluminum foil, so the panels can be made for about a tenth of what current panels cost and at a rate of several hundred feet per minute.


A thin-film solar cell consists most fundamentally of an absorber layer (the semiconductor) sandwiched in between a top and a bottom electrode layer.

The thin films of a solar cell are deposited directly onto a highly conductive metal foil (as opposed to glass or stainless steel), then the bottom electrode gets much simpler because the substrate can do the job of carrying the current.

nanoparticle ink
Nanoparticle Ink

A homogeneous mix of nanoparticles in the ink in just the right overall amounts ensures that the atomic ratios of the four elements are correct wherever the ink is printed, even across large areas of deposition.

semiconductor printing
Semiconductor Printing

Printing is much simpler and more robust than vacuum deposition techniques such as sputtering or evaporation which have conventionally been used to fabricate thin-film solar cells.

fuel cell technology
Fuel Cell Technology

A hydrogen fuel cell would bring in hydrogen and oxygen, create electricity to power your vehicle, home, etc, and release water and heat.

A fuel cell will is made up of two electrodes (anode and cathode) surrounding an electrolyte. Hydrogen, or a fuel like methanol containing hydrogen, is fed into the anode, where the hydrogen atoms, encouraged by a catalyst, split into protons and electrons.
The protons pass through a selective electrolyte membrane, while the electrons are sent off to another path, creating a usable electric current. The protons and electrons rejoin at the cathode, where the hydrogen reacts with oxygen from the air to form water.
nano fuel cells1
Nano Fuel Cells

Nanotechnolgoy will help make fuel cells smaller and more efficient so that they can eventually be used to power everyday portable devices.

nano fuel cells2
Nano Fuel Cells

Some of the initial commercial portable fuel cells improve conventional methanol polymer electrolyte membrane (PEM) fuel-cell technology with nanostructured catalytic layers and MEMS-based micro reformers.,-portable-fuel-cells/

thin film sofc
Thin Film SOFC

Ultra-thin solid oxide fuel cell (SOFC) structures containing electrolyte membranes 50-150nm thick were fabricated with the help of sputtering, lithography, and etching. They were made of 50nm YSZ electrolyte and 80nm porous Pt as cathode and anode. The peak power densities were 200 and 400 mW/cm2 at 350°C and 400°C, respectively.

electrolyte material properties
Electrolyte Material Properties

The role of the electrolyte in a SOFC is two fold:

It must form a barrier to prevent fuel and oxidant gases mixing.

Transport oxygen ions across the membrane from the cathode to the anode (with minimal electronic conductivity).

In a working fuel cell the electrolyte must therefore posses various properties:

  • Stability in both reducing and oxidizing environments.
  • Sufficiently high ionic conductivity at the cell operating temperature
  • Good thermal stability.
  • In addition, the material must be able to be formed into a thin, dense film gas tight to hydrogen.
Grain boundaries act as high diffusivity pathways, allowing more oxygen ions to move through the electrolyte, therefore increasing the overall efficiency of the cell.
nanofiltration water purification
Nanofiltration/Water Purification

Nanoporous membranes are suitable for a mechanical filtration with extremely small pores smaller than 10 nm. Nanofiltration is mainly used for the removal of ions or the separation of different fluids

The liquid to be filtered passes over the membrane at high velocity. Depending on the membrane pore size, different sizes of molecules are able to pass through the membrane.

The water treatment plant at Méry-sur-Oise provides the Parisian suburbs (4 million inhabitants) with high quality water thanks to a membrane process developed by researchers at Veolia Water.

This process, first used in the medical world, has been adapted by researchers at Veolia Water to allow for its use with large volumes of water and for the large scale production of drinking water at prices suited to market demand. Nanofiltration has been used since 2002 in Coliban, Australia, to treat up to 126 million liters of water a day